Real Madrid extended their lead at the top of the LaLiga table to seven points after edging Athletic Bilbao 1-0 on Wednesday evening.
Result: Real Madrid 1-0 Athletic Bilbao
Date: 01 December 2021
Venue: Santiago Bernabeu
Los Blancos made only one change to the team the beat Sevilla, as Lucas Vazquez replaced Dani Carvajal at right-back, with the front trio of Karim Benzema, Vinicius Junior and Marco Asensio continuing.
Madrid were on the front foot in the opening exchanges but they nearly went behind in the 23rd minute after Inaki Williams pounced on a loose ball inside box and fired a deflected shot that missed the just wide.
Carlo Ancelottti's charges were holding Bilbao in their own half, fashioning chances but they could not get past their defence and were limited to shots from outside the box.
However, Benzema broke the deadlock for the hosts just before the halftime break with a shot from a rebound after goalkeeper Unai Simon could only parry Asensio's initial strike.
The visitors were a different side in the early stages of the second stanza, putting Madrid under pressure although they could not yet test shot-stopper Thibaut Courtois.
However, Oihan Sancet came the closest to snatching the equaliser for Marcelino's troops 14 minutes before time with a low strike was parried away by Courtois after he opened space up from a throw-in.
Ancelottti made a double change in the last ten minutes, as Toni Kroos made way for Eduardo Camavinga and Nacho replaced Vazquez, but the hosts held on in the dying minutes to pull seven points clear at the top, although they have played one extra match than second-placed Atletico Madrid.
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